“We pray to be generous and visible people of Jesus Christ.”
Coming together as the Granta Vale Benefice
to carry out God's work in our Parishes
to carry out God's work in our Parishes
Holy Trinity Church, Hildersham:
Holy Trinity Church, Hildersham is part of a 7 Church group located in the South Cambridgeshire Parishes of the Abingtons, Balsham, Hildersham, Weston Colville, West Wratting and West Wickham are currently in double 'Vacancy', which means we have neither our full-time priest or House for Duty priest in place.
To assist any new prospective Rector, there are also several web-pages dedicated to each of the Seven Churches in our group, the joint and parish profiles and details about the proposed Pastoral Reorganisation
The information given below is designed to help any prospective new incumbent to learn as much about Hildersham Church's community and God's work in our Parish
Holy Trinity Church, Hildersham Profile January 2017
Holy Trinity Church, Hildersham Profile January 2017
Holy Trinity, Hildersham - profile
Hildersham is a small but very active village of 200 people. It is set in beautiful countryside with access to riverside walks, buttercup meadows and the ancient Roman Road. But it has more to offer its residents than the picture postcard idyll; it has a strong community spirit.
This strong community spirit is generated by the energy of its two organisations – Holy Trinity Church and Hildersham Village Hall Trust. The Village Hall Trust organises an annual Fete, a Quiz Night and Pop-up Pub nights. It supports the work of the church providing free use of the Hall for charitable events and services.
The Church Building:
The church is set back from the village High Street, approached through a drive with car park, a woodland area and surrounded by a beautifully maintained churchyard. The original church dates to the end of the 12th century and is Grade I listed largely for the extremely elaborate scheme of late 19th century wall and ceiling paintings by Clayton and Bell, under the supervision of the architect Charles Alban Buckler in the Chancel. These are among the most significant of their kind in the country and are of national and international interest. There are some very fine Victorian stained glass windows also by Clayton and Bell dating back to this period. There are four mediaeval high quality London brasses in the Chancel to the Paris family and a mortality brass of a skeletal figure. Churchwarden and local historian Andrew Westwood-Bate gives guided tours of the church to many groups, local and national.
There has been a recent extension through the North Porch to provide an accessible lavatory, always open to the visiting public, and water has been brought into the West Tower to provide a sink and kitchenette. This has increased the level of hospitality the church can offer.
The last Quinquennial Inspection was in 2015. There are 2 outstanding AA issues: renewing plaster to the Priests’ Vestry and South Transept and restoration to some areas of the Chancel wall-paintings. These will be addressed in 2017.
The churchyard is open with room for another 100 years and beyond.
It over looks Dovehouse meadow, an ancient site where once a Roman villa and a Romano-British burial mound once stood, and is where the original village was located.
Adjacent to the churchyard was once the site of the village school, and is now referred to as Old School Wood. The school was demolished in 1972, and the area has been developed as a place of peace, beauty and play and is used as a setting for our outdoor services such as Mossy Church, outdoor theatre productions, picnics and barbecues.
Groups and Services:
Our two Churchwardens are Cathy Myer and Andrew Westwood-Bate. There are 37 people on the Electoral Roll with average attendance of 22 adults and 3 children taking into account large attendances at Festivals, particularly Christmas for both the beautiful Candlelit Service of Nine Lessons and Carols and Christmas morning Holy Eucharist. The usual Sunday congregation is between 12 and 20.
Café Church was introduced in 2014 at the instigation of the Children’s Church Council (CCC), a group of children aged 8 to 15 who meet to discuss ways for children to have a voice in the church and community. Café Church provides a service at a time to fit in with weekend activities and to introduce a more interactive form of worship. Mossy Church is the outdoor variant of this and the PCC looks to develop more services of this kind.
A Home Group of 12 people meets fortnightly for prayer and bible study. This group is ecumenical and embraces Christians of all denominations. Although some members of the group attend other churches in Cambridge there is a strong sense of working together as Christians in the community.
Hildersham church alternates with the Black Bull public house in Balsham as host for Lent Courses. The church also hosted a Discipleship course run by the Diocese during 2016 and since the completion of the new building looks to host other courses.
The PCC has appointed two committees, the Future Committee which meets solely to plan the church’s mission (The Development Action Plan) and the Fundraising Committee. Neither of these has the power to make decisions, both make recommendations and suggestions to the full PCC. A separate team plans Cafe Church services with the Ministry Team.
The CCC organises a Creative Church Day annually for all those with creative flair who make beautiful works of art and craft to sell, raising funds for charity. This event is held in the Village Hall, the day ending with a service, also held in the Village Hall. This has attracted many families who otherwise would not come to church. This year the charity supported by the sale was REACH, with the children of the CCC buying treats to fill Christmas hampers to be distributed to those in need. The CCC organises a Bake-off as part of the Village Fete, raising funds to provide new playground equipment.
The PCC welcomes the training offered by the Diocese and attends courses to support its mission to serve the community. At present, it plans to develop new initiatives to provide ‘A Pair of Hands’ for anyone in need and to engage young people with God’s work in Hildersham and it is working with Ickleton PCC on an across Granta Deanery Youth project.
Events bring the village together and show the church is more than a Sunday museum.
Hildersham Lectures are designed to appeal to people across the whole community. They are held once a month and have grown in popularity and received with great appreciation. In the past year speakers from a range of fields have provided marvellous evening entertainment appealing to all ages. Recent subjects have included ‘Happy Birthday Addenbrooke’s: celebrating 250 years of a great hospital’, ‘The Unicorn in Art’, ‘A Night with Youth Theatre’ and ‘50 years of the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run’
A village tea, ‘It’s Teatime’ is held each month in the Village Hall to which all are invited. This attracts those from Hildersham, Abington and Linton who are at home alone and young families who call in after school.
The church building is rich with wall paintings and stained glass. The organ was built in 1900 by William Hill and has a splendid sound. Together these provide the perfect environment to present works of art and craft made by local residents and to perform a range of music, both choral and instrumental recitals. An a cappella group, The King’s Taverners, present an annual concert in the church.
‘The Outspoken Theatre Company’ presents a performance of Shakespeare annually in the Old School Wood.
The church hosts an annual Quiz in the Village Hall and a Barn Dance in a wonderful Victorian barn in the grounds of Manor Farm.
The church has also hosted several events connected to promoting the need for the Parish Nurse and talks designed to inform people on health and well-being issues
In recent years produce from the Harvest Festival service has been donated to REACH in Haverhill with a particular focus on home starter packs. This year the PCC invited the village residents to ‘Build a Bed-sit’ in the church, including bedding, crockery and cutlery.
Two collections of unwanted but good quality household goods and clothing are made annually to support the work of Emmaus.
As a Fairtrade Church and Village Hildersham promotes Fairtrade products available for sale after church services and at ‘It’s Teatime’. ‘It’s Teatime’ supports a range of charities during the year: Fairtrade, the MS Society and Breast Cancer Research.
Hildersham PCC Finance:
Hildersham PCC is a Charity in its own right, Charity No: 1153435. As a registered charity, we administer on behalf of the Seven Churches, the finances of the Parish Nurse, the Parish Administrator, the Shared Ministry Costs across the Seven Churches and the apportionment of the Seven Churches Parish Share allocation. Hildersham PCC also administers its own Gift Aid System
Hildersham PCC pays its full Parish Share of £10,066.46 in 2016. The 2016 financial year was an unusual one, as it partly covers the building and fundraising for the new North Porch (total cost £155,000.00), there was a Total Income of £121,038.42, Total Expenditure of £109,827.29, giving an overall surplus of £11,211.13. There was an Unrestricted Surplus of £5,198.48 and a Restricted Surplus of £13,763.18. All our fundraising events outside of the building project brought in a surplus of £4,419.26
Church Website & Social Media:
Hildersham Church has around 50 webpages on the comprehensive and award winning Hildersham Village Website
There are webpages about the church its work and its services, as well as a range web-pages dedicated to its rich history, nationally important wall paintings, high quality memorial brasses and stained glass.
Hildersham Church and PCC are very conscious of the value of social media in widening our links with a wider congregation, so we have a Blog (latest News) outlet, we have our own Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat accounts and has two webpages offering a CofE Digital News hub and a Digital Hints and tips webpage
119 Years of Hildersham Church Choirs:
2016, is 119 years since the first photograph we have of the Hildersham Choir taken in 1897, just 7 years after the wall paintins and the major Victorian Restoration was completed, it shows the man behind the church's transformation, Rev Canon Robert Goodwin, he was the 3rd son of Rev Charles Goodwin, (Rector of Hildersham from 1803 - 1847). Robert was born in 1816 and became the rector at Hildersham on his father's death in 1847; Robert died in late December 1899 at the age of 83, he has one of the unique distinctions of dieing in one millennium and being buried in the next in early January 1900.
We hope you enjoy this look down the years at some of the Hildersham award winning choirs from 1897, 1929, 1967, 1999, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2012 and from 2013 the Seven Churches Choir and finally our wonderful Choir of 2016
Christmas 2013 (Podcast):
Listen to the whole 2013 service, just click on the podcast link below
Click on this link to download the 2013 service sheet so you can follow the service
PLEASE NOTE: this was recorded on a moblie phone from the back of the church so the sound quality is not the best
Christmas 2014 - The WW1 Christmas Truce:
In 2014, we commemorated the centenary of the start of the Great War, while it was a beautiful Nine Lessons and carols, the children's performance matched the somberness of the occassion. Below is an extract from Carol Ann Duffy's book 'The Christmas Truce' that the children read and enacted